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Internet Explorer leads early HTML5 compliance tests

updated 05:40 pm EDT, Tue November 2, 2010

Tests limited to few elements

The Worldwide Web Consortium (W3C) has published results from its first set of HTML5 compliance tests, which were topped by the latest Internet Explorer 9 beta. Microsoft's browser was found to adhere to a limited set of features more closely than Firefox 4 beta 6, Chrome 7, Opera 10.6, and Apple's Safari 5 browsers.

The W3C tests only covered seven features of HTML 5, including attributes, video, canvas, getElementsByClassName, foreigncontent and XHTML5. Omitted standards, however, included elements such as the file API, local storage, drag-and-drop, Web Workers, and SVG animations, among others.

As noted by Wired, IE9 appears to be up to speed with a few of the most common components in HTML5, but the browser would fall far behind its competition if the W3C had tested a wider range of elements. Aside from HTML5, IE9 also lacks support for many CSS3 features that can be viewed on Firefox, Chrome, and Safari.

Microsoft recently announced that it will shift its strategy to focus on HTML5 instead of its Silverlight for cross-platform endeavors. The company's PDC event showcased IE9 running HTML5 demos, including animations and video.

The final version of Internet Explorer 9 is expected to be released next year, while the HTML5 specifications may not be finalized for two to three years. [via The Register]

By Electronista Staff


  1. bjojade

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2007



    I don't understand the point of this. Instead of testing the overall spec, they picked a few specs that IE happened to be better at, and then claimed that IE is more compliant?

  1. Makosuke

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    Thank God

    At long last a version of IE with reasonable standards support. This specific test is a little weird, but then the W3C's handling of HTML5 (or, rather, lack thereof) has been weird for a long time--it's telling that the WHATWG needed to do an end run around them to get it off the ground.

    I'm just glad that after eight years of mockery by MS, we're finally one real step closer to a world in which I can design a site using modern features and have some expectation that most of the audience will see it as intended. (That IE8 has functional support for compliant HTML and CSS doesn't really count, as it's just "not broken" as opposed to "pretty.")

    Now if only MS would push IE9 as a "critical" OS update, rather than a recommended one. Actually, what I really want to see is IE8 under XP pushed as a critical update--that would make a significant difference in the world at large.

  1. The Vicar

    Junior Member

    Joined: Jul 2009



    Of all the browsers available today, the one which changes most slowly is IE. So this means that in six months or so, when all the other browsers have improved, IE won't be a boat anchor like it has in the past.

  1. macnixer

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Mar 2006


    Why not post the URL too?

    Almost every news item posted on MacNN does not contain the right reference to the sites they are talking about. Weird. Like in this article the HTML5 link takes you to another old MacNN article. Why not also reference the W3C test results page:

  1. WiseWeasel

    Junior Member

    Joined: Apr 1999



    Their support for CSS still sucks, though. Still no CSS gradients? C'mon, MSIE team! Pull it together!

  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Nov 2009


    Does that mean

    Internet Explorer 9 is the best browser to use??

  1. t_c

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2002



    Microsoft is getting praise for a bit of HTML5 support and for finally coming out with a browser that might be usable but they don't support some CSS that all the others already do?

    I'm tired of each of the Browser unique iregularities and although getting better, sounds like isn't going to disappear.

    I think all that I"m going to use HTML 5 in the near future might be the Video tags... and I'll let the JWPlayer that I use take care of the details to switch between it and Flash.

    Sometimes I wish that ALL browsers had to test a 'standard' W3C test and so, like TV's, the TV stations don't have to test on every brand. Oh wait, I still have a Square CRT.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001



    Who cares how any of them do, since the spec hasn't even been finalized yet. There's nothing like a bunch of web developers developing sites to the 'latest' specs and having to keep updating them as those specs keep changing.

    It's too bad most web developers would stop wasting their time on fancy and cute features (gradients? Who the h*** cares about gradients?) and the 'look' and worry more about how usable the site actually is. eCommerce sites are the worst. So many just make it like pulling teeth to try to place an order.

    And can't tell you how funny I find it going to a web site and seeing the javascript errors pop-up on screen (what, is it that hard to check your f'ing code?). Maybe HTML 6 will put in some requirements that javascript become a 'real' programming language and not something that one can just throw together and let the interpreter deal with the inconsistencies (no typed variables? semi-colons are optional? variable declaration optional? You can tell it was written by a bunch of hackers and programming geeks who don't like the 'restrictions' real languages impose - you know, like readability).

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